Piper’s Final Weekend as Pastor

David Mathis

This Easter marks the end of an era at Bethlehem Baptist.

John Piper served as the church’s primary preacher from July 13, 1980, until December 31, 2012. Since January 1 this year, he has been associate pastor, and his final task on staff is preaching this weekend’s Easter message — once Saturday night, three times Sunday morning, and then the last hurrah on Sunday night.

It’s the end of an…

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The God-Centered Cross of Love Inexhaustible

Jonathan Parnell

The hands-down, most horrific nightmare possible is that of a God who is angry without due cause. Could we imagine anything worse?

It would be the most terrible thing if the only person who has the power to destroy you forever were ferociously angry with you for no reason. That God would hate you just because. That he would throw his fury around on a whim. What if he were…

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What Does It Mean for Jesus to Despise Shame?

John Piper

In running the race of life we are to look to the exaltation of Jesus at the end of his race. But Hebrews 12:2 tells us to look not only to his exaltation, but to his motivation.

Jesus was carried in the agonies of the last lap of his race by the hope of joy. “For the joy that was set before him [he] endured the cross, despising the shame”…

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You Killed the Author of Life (Preparing for Good Friday)

Tony Reinke

Sin in Eden knocked all creation into chaos. Sin at Babel marked the collective pride of mankind. And while every sin is an act of God-rejection, humanity’s wickedness reaches new heights in the horrifying events of Good Friday.

Holy Week makes us uncomfortable. There is glorious life and victory to come on Easter Sunday, but to get there we must pass directly through the darkness of Good Friday. We must…

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Running the Race, Looking to the Finisher

John Piper

Since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of

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The Creator on His Knees (Preparing for Maundy Thursday)

Tony Reinke

In the UK a few years back a group of church leaders used a Maundy Thursday church service to do something extraordinary. As people entered the church for the Thursday gathering of Holy Week, elders greeted them on their knees in the entryway. Every attendee was invited to sit, and there, in the entrance of the church, the elders removed shoes and socks and washed the reluctant feet of every…

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The Role of the Psalms in the Life of the Church

Tony Reinke

The Book of Psalms is an amazing gift to the church. Says John Piper, “The Psalms, more intentionally than any other book of the Bible, is designed to carry, express, and shape our emotions, to give vent to them — all of them, and shape them, to reign them in, and to free them up, to explode them, and to kill them when they should be killed.”

The Psalms are…

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The Old Man and His Big Book

David Mathis

It felt as though we were traveling back in time.

Snow was falling, the roads were icy, and civilization was in the rearview. Tony Reinke and I had landed an interview with a 96-year-old theologian tucked away in rural Minnesota, and now we meant to make good on it, despite the distance and wintry weather.

We knew we were in for a memorable day. Robert Duncan Culver is the only…

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Grateful for His Greatest Gift (Interview with Ann Voskamp)

David Mathis

Gratitude is a virtue most worthy of our cultivation. Indeed, in all the Christian life, gratitude is to be planted, watered, dressed, and harvested. Gratitude gets at the very essence of what it means to be created, finite, fallen, redeemed, and sustained by the God of all grace.

Ingratitude was at the heart of the fall, and at the heart of what’s fallen about us to this day. “Although they…

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Meant to Make All the Difference

Jonathan Parnell

Theology makes all the difference in your life.

In John 10, as John Piper explains, the doctrine of Jesus’s deity is presented in terms of its utmost impact on how we live. In short, because Jesus and the Father are one, our souls are incredibly secure (John 10:28–30).

Biblical doctrine is not for the abstract. It’s for where you are right now.

This excerpt is from the sermon, “I

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